Origin: Africa, Kenya and Tanzania. Its natural habitat is intermittent freshwater marshes.
Temperature: 24.0–28.0 °C
Conductivity: 280–620 µS
Diet: These fare best on small live foods such as Daphnia and small bloodworm, but often readily accept frozen foods. Some may also take dried foods.
Water: This fish prefers relatively soft and acidic water with a temperature of around 23-25°C
Breeding: This is a bottom spawner which lays its eggs in the soft muddy substrate, peat is often used for this. Most breeders keep them in a bare-bottomed tank with a small container of soft peat to collect eggs in. The parents spawn a few eggs during every embrace. It is possible to get up to 100 eggs very quickly with a good live food diet. The peat must then be dried out abit and stored between 26-28°C for some weeks. The amount of time required to store the eggs varies depending on a number of factors including age of fish and temperature. It is possible to tell when eggs are "ready" by viewing under a USB microscope. They should have a clearly visible eye which is surrounded by a gold ring. These eggs are referred to as "eyed-up" and are ready to be hatched. Once storing has been completed and the eyed-up eggs are ready, the peat is re-wet. After about 2 hours fry will begin to hatch. First foods should be very small i.e. rotifers and/or vinegar eels progressing after a few days onto baby brine shrimp. Growth rates are fast so ensure large amounts of food for the fry.